The Game is (Almost) On
It’s finally happening.
After an agonizing three-year wait, on January 1st, 2017, the fourth season of Sherlock will be released to the public. The premiere episode, entitled “The Six Thatchers”, will be the first one released of the three episodes that will make up the highly anticipated new season.
Don’t be fooled. This isn’t a one-hour special that producers created to tauntingly dangle in front of Sherlock-starved fans. This is the real deal. All one-and-a-half hours in its full glory. And judging by the trailers, it is shaping up to be one the most intense seasons yet.
The first trailer for the new season reveals the return (and revival) of multiple key players. Moriarty, perhaps the most insidious of all of Sherlock’s adversaries, kicks off the trailer with his classically haunting line, “Didja miss me?”
That we did Moriarty. That we did.
However, despite the hype and speculation that is surrounding the new season, the trailers do not reveal much about the plot. We are given snippets of familiar places and characters, but there is nothing definitively revealed about what the actual season will entail. The trailer may be ambiguous, but as Sherlock ominously says, it is clear that “something’s coming.”
Judging by the ratings the series has received, Sherlock’s views are only going to climb. In the US, the premiere of the third season had over 2 million more viewers than the second season. The fourth season is expected to continue this path of growth in American viewership, despite the three-year wait between the third and fourth seasons.
Unfortunately, these long waits between seasons are the norm when it comes to Sherlock. Sherlock fans are known to be many things; nerds, bingers, and somewhat insane. What other explanation is there for the torture we subject ourselves to as we patiently wait for BBC to grant us three measly episodes every two, maybe even three years? Therein lies the problem with being a Sherlock fan. The waiting is almost unbearable. But for some reason, we stick around, steadfast as John Watson.
What is it that makes us stick around? Is it Benedict Cumberbatch’s irresistible genius? The thrill of the chase? The anachronism of it all?
BBC has got it right. Sherlock is unique because it is intelligent. Every episode can stand alone as a full-length movie, compete with the full arch of a classic story. And you can never stop thinking. Sherlock isn’t the type of show you half-heartedly watch while folding your laundry. It is so much more than that.
Based on the stories of Sir Arthur Conan, Sherlock brings these original mysteries to life. Creators Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss propel Doyle’s characters and stories into an arena that looses the horse and buggy for more practical things like cellphones and cars (how convenient!). Sherlock’s world is all the more intense, as he faces age-old mysteries in a modern setting.
Sherlock has an addictive quality. The kind of quality that makes you wonder how Saturday night turned into Sunday so quickly, or how you watched for nine hours straight without leaving your room. The twists and turns in every episode are warranted to whiplash its viewers into captivation and leave them begging for more. The agony of waiting between seasons dissipates the moment you press play and are transported into Holmes’ mind palace.
Maybe this is why we Sherlock devotees never waver in our allegiance to the show. We’ve crafted a reciprocal relationship in which we offer unwavering support to a show that never disappoints us.
So far, this support has paid off. As for the fourth season, the wait is almost over. So Sherlock fans, start charging your laptops. The game is on.